Saturday, April 5, 2014

Happy 1st Birthday to Fletcher

My last post was one year ago when he was born.  Life with three leaves very little time to blog!  Fletcher has brought us so much joy this last year.  He babbles joyfully and he is continually speed crawling his way from toy to kitchen cabinet to sister's drink (their drinks are always better than his own) to dishwasher and then up the stairs to the playroom.  He can tell you what a sheep, elephant, car (Vrrroooom), duck, and bear say and he continually says "dada" and the occasional "mama" when he wants something.  He could walk if he wanted too, but he's a little cautious and I think he won't walk until he is sure he will never fall down (that's what Harper did, Allie on the other hand had no fear of a fall and always sported a bruise).  His sound machine is his favorite toy.  He is a great eater and can take down almost anything you give him.  I never bothered with baby food because he always did well with feeding himself from the tray. He's also a good sleeper and pretty good napper.  He had a rough patch where he woke up every night but by five months he was sleeping 7pm to 6am (and he's still an early riser).  Having one sweet baby to care for has been so manageable and such a joy to me!

His sisters are two sweet little mamas to him.  They make sure he doesn't go down the stairs, happily spoon feed him yogurt, entertain him with toys and silly faces, and Harper loves to clean up his room while I am putting him down for his nap.  His nicknames are Fletchy (Allie almost always calls him this), the bean, baby Olaf, Fletch, silly bean man, and baby.

Enjoy some pictures from a small gathering of neighbors and family for his first birthday by going to this album

Or here are the highlights:

Adorable smash cake by Emily Henegar of Cookie in the Kitchen!
He was very cautious about the cake and very satisfied.  He could found on this family to help (especially because it was the most amazing real vanilla bean buttercream icing)
"D" hung a swing just for Fletcher in our front yard. Couldn't have done it without Michael's pitching arm. 

D and Fletcher

Friday, May 10, 2013

Welcome Fletcher Jackson Wakefield

We are thrilled to introduce blueberry #3.  He arrived on March 30th and was 9 lbs. and 21 1/4 inches long.  Fletcher is Michael's great grandfather's middle name and Jackson is Michael's dad's middle name and his grandmother's maiden name.  The first two weeks of his life were actually a breeze starting with an easy delivery and what felt to me a resort vacation in the hospital.  He was incredibly sleepy the first two weeks and hardly made a peep except to remind me every three hours that he was hungry.  I had a few days of help from my mom and then my San-San swept to pamper us with her cooking, house-keeping, and baby whispering.  The last three weeks he has still been very good for a newborn, but thinks he is the hungriest man alive and lets us know he has a voice too.  He has become very alert lately and graces us with a few half smiles every now and then.  It is so funny to me that he is all boy already- lots of grunts, very strong, and even his cry sounds like a boy cry.

His sisters love him very much.  Harper coos to him in a sweet baby voice and Allie likes to caress his head and give him gentle kisses.  They are enjoying the baby gear that came out of storage: swinging, bouncing, transporting the play mat around the house, sitting on the nursing pillow with him while he eats (yes I often have three people piled on me), and pushing around his pram.  I think they are emotionally adjusted to him now, but at first Harper took some frustration out on Allie (hitting and hair-pulling) and Allie was very protective of me and clinging to me.

At his one month appointment, he was 11 lbs 2 oz (82nd percentile) and 23 inches (92nd percentile).  You would think this big boy would be sleeping through the night with those stats but he is Mr. 3 hours on the dot.  Surely, he's going to surprise me with a 5 hour stretch soon.

Blog posts may be few and far between for a while now as you can imagine life is pretty hectic in our family.  We feel so well loved and cared for by all our friends, neighbors and family though.  Don't know how I could survive without all the extra help, playdates for Allie and Harper, and delicious meals.  Thanks everyone!

I've started another album where you can see more pictures of him and his sisters.  Look on the left side of this blog.

Works as a triple!

Harper hard at work.

Friday, March 29, 2013

Baby Boy and Two and Half Years Old

I'm four days past baby boy's due date!  Yesterday, my doctor scheduled an induction for Wednesday, April 4th but I'm really hoping he decides to come before then on his own.  He's doing well and they estimate he's around 8 pounds.  It was fun to get a final ultrasound.

I am very ready for him and getting impatient, but it also feels like I'm getting little gifts of schedule-free days with Allie and Harper and unexpected nights of sleep.  Here is his nursery. It was already painted baby blue and the only new piece of furniture is the rug, which was a shower gift from my mom and sister.  The dresser was alternately mine, Tyler's and Bobby's growing up. It's a tiny room but the space is used well since the crib fit perfectly in the odd window box. 

I'm also taking advantage of the extra time to write an update on Allie and Harper at two and a half (almost).  I stopped doing the regular updates because instead of doing a few new things each week to report, they are constantly changing and surprising us, so it's hard to sum them up in a few paragraphs, but here we go...


This lady thinks she's the boss.  She understands how things work and likes to instruct on how they should be done.  Michael says, "I'm going to work." and she says some version of, "Go put on your work shoes, and then the door is right there.  Your car is outside, you need your keys, and be careful on the stairs."  You can imagine that she also likes to tell you exactly what she does and doesn't want to do, wear, or eat.  Sometimes, when mom does not follow her instruction of the moment, tantrum ensues. 
A happy Harper though is a total joy.  She loves to read, especially Bible stories (wish I could take more credit for this, but really she is just drawn to all her bible books without much encouragement from me).  She flips through a book on her own quite often and does a pretty good job of "reading" out loud.  She also loves to color, and I have to give Michael credit for persisting in teaching her how to hold her crayons properly -- she has a great pencil grip despite me being skeptical that was worth teaching to a two year old.  

Her blue bunny and blanket are long-time treasures, and she goes through stretches with addictions to other baby dolls or animals.  She's finally beginning to admit that the $5 sparkly shoes that my mom got her at Walmart don't really fit anymore, so I can sometimes get her into other footwear. Her obsession with shoes continues and she is very helpful at fetching the shoes that Michael and I want to wear from our closets.  Finally, my dad put an awesome swing in our front yard, and I'm very impressed at how she runs, catches the swing on her belly, and makes herself fly on her own. 


From how she was as a baby -- aggressive, fearless, constantly on the go -- I never thought that Allie would be girlier than Harper.  She is still the little energizer bunny, but will now have nothing to do with clothes that aren't dresses without lots of convincing.  She talks about marriage a good bit:  who is married to who, wearing her blanket as a veil, and that she is married to our neighbor Rob.  Cinderella is an obsession (despite our best efforts to avoid the Disney-princess craze).  She takes interest in painted nails (not her own, of course!) and is very maternal.  She makes sure that her baby and pink bunny get adequate food and sleep.  They get rocked and sung to sleep and usually need a sound machine as well.  

At this moment, I hear her on the monitor during rest time belting out "So Long, Farewell" from the Sound of Music.  She sings continuously and it's pretty amazing some of the notes she can hit.  She is also a potty pro. Her smile is contagious and her hops and running make me light-hearted.  Her favorite book is probably Madeline, and she is great at filling in the lines.  She also likes bible stories, particularly about Goliath, Daniel, and Noah.  Allie is very tender-hearted and made my week when she hugged me recently and said, "You are a good mama."  That loving encouragement really helped me quell my anger for at least a couple daily power struggles I deal with from both ladies.

Michael was able to convince her to wear hiking clothes.
I can officially call my ladies potty trained, though Harper still has a fear of going more than pee on the potty.  She holds it in for a day or two and then desperately asks for a diaper, disappears for 10-15 minutes and then comes waddling back asking for clean undies.  On the other hand, I would put money on Allie being the most regular 2 year old in town.  Two very different people!  I'm prepared for some regression after baby boy comes since I imagine I won't be able to assist them with each potty trip all day.

Both these ladies love Peter Pan, Cinderella, the Jungle Book, Dumbo and Pocahontas (basically the Disney movies that they have watched so far).  I made a CD with music from these movies plus Sound of Music, Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, Annie, the Lion King, and Mary Poppins, and they cannot get enough of it both at home and in the car (let me know if you want a copy!).  I field requests for the Elephant Marching song, the Bear Necessities, and So Long, Farewell all day long.

If baby boy had decided to come on time, I would have missed out on this neighborhood Easter Egg hunt:

Easter Egg hunt!

A rare family photo

Happy Easter everyone!

Friday, March 22, 2013

A&H's 3rd Room

One of the things I am enjoying most about our new house is having Allie and Harper in their little nook of room and playroom upstairs.  It has really cut down on toy pick-up and I love that we aren't tiptoeing around after we put them to bed.  Their Christmas present this year was big girl bedding and my mom helped me pick out the paint color to go with it: Pink Popsicle (Benjamin Moore).

They love reporting that their room is pink, and you should have seen how special Harper thought her room was on the day we moved in.  She couldn't wipe the smile off her face.  I'm glad this will be their room for a long time since they've already had three before turning two and a half. 

Also for Christmas, my dad repainted lots of the baby furniture Tyler and I had as little girls.  Now it fills Allie and Harper's playroom.  The pink love seat was Mom and Dad's, then migrated to my room in high school.  These rooms will never look this clean again!

Baby Boy/Blueberry #3 is due Monday and I'm really wanting to have him this weekend.  Maybe I'll get some pictures of his room up here soon. 

Sunday, March 3, 2013

37 weeks and Videos of A&H

Today I am 37 weeks and 2 days with Blueberry #3.  For Allie and Harper, I was induced at 37 weeks and 1 day.  

Here's a belly photo comparison:

Twin Belly v. Singleton Belly at 37 weeks
No surprise that I was much bigger with Allie and Harper at this point.  This pregnancy has been a breeze compared with carrying twins.  No bedrest, no Braxton Hicks contractions, and much better sleep.  Also, with Allie and Harper I tried to gain as much weight as possible by eating lots of protein because research shows that twin moms who gain more weight are more likely to have healthier babies, especially if they come early.  (It definitely showed in my face and arms.)  One minor complaint:  with both pregnancies I had/have a burning pain between my ribs that is supposedly a stretched ligament.  I had instant relief when they were born and I'm sure it will go away as soon as baby boy clears out too.

I do feel like a boat at this point, but I'm reminding myself to savor this time with only two little people to care for.  Here's a 2 minute long video of these very entertaining little people (3 different clips: Squirting each other with a squirt gun, Harper's piano skills, and the new swing D put in our front yard):

Allie and Harper have adjusted so well to the new house.  I'm hoping to get some good pictures of their new room and playroom soon. They love that their new bedroom is pink, and I think this really helped with the transition.  We feel so blessed to be in a home that suits us so well and is surrounded by amazing neighbors and friends.

Lately: Fun with Houston (basically they are triplets), couch potatoes while we unpack, first ballet birthday party, princess towel, Botanical Gardens, and back patio fun.
And having fun at Catch Air!

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Two are Better than One!

Before Allie and Harper arrived, my mom gave us a little tile to hang in the nursery with Bible verse:  "Two are better than one. If one falls down, his friend can help him up."  (Ecclesiastes 4:10)

With so much time spent on the changing table, Allie and Harper learned their first bible verse without me really even trying.  They both just started reciting it some time this summer; I would read it to them while they were trying to kick it off the wall.  Here is a long video Michael caught of them reenacting the verse in early December:

It's moments like these when I realize how sweet having twins is!

Two are better than one!

Saturday, January 12, 2013

October-December update!

It's time for a recap on two very busy ladies!  We're staying on our toes around here trying to keep up with them.  They've had some pretty hilarious commentary lately.  Yesterday, Allie said, "I'm going to get in the car. See ya!" To which Harper quickly accepted and responded, "Are you going to take Peachtree?" Later in the day, Allie was sorting through my wallet and found our Botanical Gardens Membership card.  She said, "This 'tanical gardens credit card. (pretending to read it closely) Dear Allie, I want to go to the 'tanical gardens soon." On this same day, they both wet their pants at the playground and (separately) were in big trouble before 9am.  Later, though, Harper said, "Mom, thanks for bringing me to Trader Joe's."  They don't let me stay frustrated with them for too long.

You may remember that I attempted potty-training boot camp a few months ago.  Allie took to it beautifully for a while, but we eventually went back to full time diapers after many accidents, push-back, and realizing the difficulty of managing two curious and head-strong toddlers in public restrooms.  My next plan was to just wait until they basically trained themselves.  But plans changed because I had to keep up the momentum my Mom started when they went to Chattanooga without us for the three days before Christmas Eve.  Harper had basically refused to go potty for me, but Lovey had her pottying consistently.  Then when we got back to Atlanta she loved being a big girl, wearing undies, and getting treats, stickers, and high-fives. We had a few accident-free mornings and afternoons, but I feel my resolve weakening and push-back is emerging again as I've let them be in Pull-ups more than I should.   Now it's time to redouble my efforts by forcing myself to put them in undies and make frequent potty trips.  They are ready; Mom just needs to buckle down and not be disappointed if we revert after our move and new baby brother's arrival. 

Yes, we are moving.  You may think that we've taken up moving as a second hobby.  This is our 5th move in 6 years of marriage!  But we're excited to know we'll be in our new house long-term.  On January 31st, we will own a home basically right across this street from where we currently are renting.  We're not taking on any major renovations at this point, but picking out paint colors, completing mortgage paperwork and getting estimates on mold remediation, rodent issues, and deep cleanings has also kept us busy.  It's scary but exciting.  It feels really good to be putting down roots in Atlanta.

Our baby boy seems healthy and is growing well at 30 weeks now.  This pregnancy has been such a breeze compared to a twin pregnancy!  Half the doctors visits, no indigestion, no rib cage pain, no ridiculous weight gain, no Braxton Hicks, and I could sleep on my stomach until a few weeks ago.  This boy is a kicker.  Hoping that the move or chasing two year olds doesn't bring him early!

Here are some photos from the past few months.

I was excited that Mom found some of Tyler and my old dresses.  They love wearing their sashes with any outfit (because Cinderella and Wendy from Peter Pan wear sashes).  Harper's scab (under her eye) is from a yardwork mishap: Allie got a little excited with the rake.
Late October trip to Sea Island.

Fun in the leaves.
Dancing at Aunt Lauren and Uncle Jason's wedding.  They had a blast dancing and eating, and thought they were "at the ball." Very in to Cinderella right now.
At "Madeline's Christmas" and with the cast.  They were mesmerized for this 1 hour 10 minute play.  This will have to be an annual trip.
Meal times lately are much easier.  Limited food throwing, not too picky, get in their chairs without assistance, and occasionally even clean up after themselves.  Thankful for my happy eaters!
The beloved Dolphin Show at the Aquarium with buddy and neighbor Houston.  We love the Heckmans!
CiCi and Papa took us all to LegoLand when they came to visit after Christmas.
To the park with Houston.  Loving the tag team on childcare with our nextdoor neighbors!
Harper had her first haircut at Pigtails and Crewcuts.  Allie happily waited in a nearby fire truck since Lovey had cut her hair the week before.

And more December fun!